The effect of job satisfaction on employee wellbeing among administrative staff at the Durban University of Technology
Stress management is becoming more and more important as workloads increase. The World Health Organization (WHO, 2005:1-22) estimates that there will be a gradual rise in the number of people experiencing mental health difficulties in the workplace by the year 2020. Current trends indicate an emphasis on the employer's responsibility to provide services that meet their employees' mental health (WHO, 2005:1-22). International organizations such as the European Union and the World Health Organizations have thus been making recommendations about the measures that employers need to take to tackle workplace stress and promote employee wellbeing. Research indicates that employee wellbeing is determined both by an individual's personality and the context of the work situation. Employers can have a huge impact on employee wellbeing, by creating appropriate work demands, support and levels of control, effective communication and engagement, supportive leadership and management and by promoting activities that improve health and wellbeing. This research attempted to better understand the happy/productive worker thesis. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of job satisfaction on the wellbeing of administrative staff at the Durban University of Technology (OUT). A mixed methods approach was used to collect data in the form of questionnaires and semi-structured interviews from administrative staff on the six campuses of DUT. Analysis of results indicated that: job satisfaction significantly impacts on the wellbeing of employees; staff were unhappy with their work conditions and this subsequently led to physiological symptoms of stress and which in turn negatively impacted on the their health; and were experiencing many symptoms of burnout. Further investigation is needed to fully understand the predictors of burnout, i.e. the organizational and individual factors that impact burnout so that appropriate interventions may be put into place to increase employee wellbeing.